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Generations: Jesus Incarnate

Tonight’s RECTOR’s CONFERENCE was titled “Generations: Jesus Incarnate in History.”  We profiled the last 5 generations with the strengths and weakenesses, along with how the Church benefits from the growth in change.

I.  Prayer:  Eccelesiates 3:1-8

II.  Intro:  (border guard story)

III.  Gaudium et spec #44 (The Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, 1965):

44. Just as it is in the world’s interest to acknowledge the Church as an historical reality, and to recognize her good influence, so the Church herself knows how richly she has profited by the history and development of humanity.

The experience of past ages, the progress of the sciences, and the treasures hidden in the various forms of human culture, by all of which the nature of man himself is more clearly revealed and new roads to truth are opened, these profit the Church, too. For, from the beginning of her history she has learned to express the message of Christ with the help of the ideas and terminology of various philosophers, and and has tried to clarify it with their wisdom, too. Her purpose has been to adapt the Gospel to the grasp of all as well as to the needs of the learned, insofar as such was appropriate. Indeed this accommodated preaching of the revealed word ought to remain the law of all evangelization. For thus the ability to express Christ’s message in its own way is developed in each nation, and at the same time there is fostered a living exchange between the Church and’ the diverse cultures of people.(22) To promote such exchange, especially in our days, the Church requires the special help of those who live in the world, are versed in different institutions and specialties, and grasp their innermost significance in the eyes of both believers and unbelievers. With the help of the Holy Spirit, it is the task of the entire People of God, especially pastors and theologians, to hear, distinguish and interpret the many voices of our age, and to judge them in the light of the divine word, so that revealed truth can always be more deeply penetrated, better understood and set forth to greater advantage.

… Moreover, she gratefully understands that in her community life no less than in her individual sons, she receives a variety of helps from men of every rank and condition, for whoever promotes the human community at the family level, culturally, in its economic, social and political dimensions, both nationally and internationally, such a one, according to God’s design, is contributing greatly to the Church as well, to the extent that she depends on things outside herself. Indeed, the Church admits that she has greatly profited and still profits from the antagonism of those who oppose or who persecute her.(23)

Time Magazine 1997, Generation XIV.  Generations, An Intro

Theory of Stages of Historical Development:  Crisis, High, Awakening, Unraveling

Types of Generations:  Hero, Prophet, Nomad, Artist

V.  General Ideas about Living Generations

The Great Generation (1911-1928) … Great Depression, World War II
The Silent Generation (1928-1942) … lived better than parents, went to college
The Baby Boomers (1942-1960) … Vietnam, civil rights, protests, assasinations, Woodstock, Watergate, Moon landing
Generation X (1961-1981) … Reagan Era, latch-key kids, no big government … smaller steps, philosophically post-modern
Millennial Generation (1982-2001) … 9/11, Internet, optimistic, “most loved generation” (Baby on Board), helicopter parents, “institution as family,”  46% non-white

VI.  Considerations for Faith & Ministry


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